Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Perspective

In the past six days, the following events have occurred:

*I locked myself out of my house.

*The power went out in our rent house and despite the fact it is the ONLY house on the block with no power, and I have tons of painting to do, and have made numerous calls to the power company, it remains cold and lifeless. Sort of like the way my kids’ breakfast pancakes look each morning when it takes them twenty damn minutes to get out of bed despite my repeatedly yelling and threatening encouraging them lovingly to wake up and get moving already.

*The power went out in my personal residence. Also cold and lifeless, but at that point we bagged it and spent the night at my mother’s. Thank goodness we were only without power for about a day and a half.

*My washer went out.

*I started my period (you’re glad I shared that one with you, aren’t you?)

*My dog died.

Needless to say, I was starting to get just a wee bit discouraged about the way this past week was going. And perhaps I sought solace in a box of Russell Stover chocolates (yes, the entire box in one sitting, do you have a problem with that?) and then perhaps I was even more discouraged because even my fat pants no longer fit.

Then, I realized. Not that I had forgotten, by any means. I will never, ever, ever forget. But I remembered specifically what we were doing exactly two years ago this weekend --- celebrating the final days of my daughter’s twenty-six month battle with leukemia. Celebrating the final days of chemo, spinal taps, bone marrow biopsies, shots and pills and port accesses and surgeries and bald heads and nausea and steroids and toxic drugs and mood swings and fatigue.

Two years since she won.

She has not relapsed. Friends have.

She is still with us. Some friends are not.



In light of the incredible blessing the past two years have been, I think I can get over a few temporary modern inconveniences.

And in the even bigger, bigger picture --- if the sweet baby Jesus can be born in a barn and not complain about it, I should be able to hang out in my garage for two hours, on a futon, wrapped in blankets, waiting for the locksmith, without being such a whiner.

See what I mean? It’s all perspective. :)

27 comments:

Anonymous said...

Way to put things in perspective. You're so right.

--Patti in NJ

Colleen said...

This made me tear up a little bit. I can't believe it's been two years. I'm so happy for you guys.

WendyK said...

I was crying by the end of your post.

That is so true! We have several gripes this year (nothing compared to your week, sorry), but when I think that this time last year we were afraid our little guy would die and we had no idea why (not yet dxed until 12/28 but very very sick), things don't seem so bad.

Congrats on 2 years OT!!! We still have 2 years and 3 months left on Kaden's protocol, but some day we will be celebrating that anniversary too! Perspective sure changes when cancer butts into your life.

Prayers for a Very Merry Christmas!

mom25in5 said...

2 years...congratulations Kendrie! Here's hoping that your week gets better...and don't you just love that when we're really ticked at the state of things God goes ahead and puts something in our way to make it all trivial? I love that about Him!

Hugs!

Kim

Anonymous said...

Congratulations on celebrating 2 years OT! How cool is that?!

Marie
www.caringbridge.org/visit/marielle

Anonymous said...

Like many other things on the front of my frig is my invitation to Kendrie's off treatment party. Yes it is still there and won't be coming down as long as I am alive! I have lots of pictures of the kids I write to there, and I don't care if service people look at me funny when something goes wrong in my house. I have given up even trying to explain. I don't think they "get" it.

You brought me to tears and then back down to earth tonight.

Thanks

Postcard Cindy

Amie said...

Definitely all about perspective. You go, Kendrie, and keep on kicking cancer's sorry little hiney!

Anonymous said...

Two thoughts:
1. You're very wise, extremely wise even!
2. I can't believe I've "known" you for over 2 years.

Dixie in CA

Jeri from Hawaii said...

How right you are about perspective! When I get seriously annoyed with my husband I remember that just 14 months ago we were told he only had a year to live. Thankfully a second opinion and treatment at a cancer center gave us the chance to grow old together. Yeah, sometimes you have to remember where you've been in order to appreciate how far you've come.

Like Dixie in CA I can't believe I've "known" you for so many years. I find myself talking to friends and telling them stories about my friend that just moved to OK. I never even bother to mention that we've never actually met!

Monica H said...

My grandmother was just diagnosed with cancer and I hope someday soon she will be wearing a sweatshirt like Kendrie's. You are so blessed to have her with you. Good job kicking butt!

Natalie said...

I hear 'ya cluckin' big chicken! (That's what my sisters and I say to each other when we get it!).

Natalie

Libby said...

I'm one of those frequent lurkers/rare posters but this post is one I will respond to without hesitation! I've followed Kendrie's progress for much more than two years - I remember only too well the concerns you expressed - the pain she was enduring due to the treatments. i remember so, so well the celebration you reference in your post. Yes, perspective is one of those vitally important ingredients in our lives that sometimes we overlook.

On the other hand, though, you have had a rough week. Losing a pet - losing control of your life (via lovely power outages!) - that counts too! So don't be hard on yourself - you have encountered one of those times when the world seems to conspire against you.

I was in a yoga class tonight and our teacher talked about that very thing - the day or week or month when everything seems to go wrong - when you keep dropping things - or losing keys (I immediately thought of you!) - when every stoplight you encounter is red - on and on. Her words of wisdom were exactly what you have done - that when we encounter times like that, it is the very time we need to look inward - to account for ourselves - to take stock of the good things in our lives. You have the very best there is - a daughter who not only has kicked cancer in the butt but who has flourished - a family that has done the same.

I sincerely believe that your acknowledgment and thanks to the universe for those events will bring more events of the same to you - that you will find your life improving minute by minute. In other words, the more you say "thank you" the more reason you will have to say just that!

On a totally different topic, I cannot resist letting you know that we have no ice storms/snow here in Georgia! While our temperatures are not where they were last week (in the 70s!), we are not even close to having any major ice/snow storms that I know of! So, just consider, if you were still in Georgia, how different would your life be??? Just kidding - I know being home brings a lot more to the table than the weather in Georgia!

I hope you all have a very Merry Christmas and that 2008 will be the very best year yet for all you!

Libby Gladden

Grandma J said...

Somehow when we stop to count our blessing, the irritating roadblocks seem small.
You always have a way of putting things in perspective.

You get it!!

Trish in Leesburg, VA said...

Wow! It's really been 2 years?!?! That means I've "known" you guys for even longer than 2 years! Go Kendrie!! :) Like Jeri I tell stories about you guys as if we've met... hahaha! anyways, thanks for putting it all in persepctive- the last couple months have been hard here, too, but not near as bad as what Kendrie and you all went through. Merry Christmas to the Escoes!

Anonymous said...

Well said...Congratulations on two years off chemo. You all have a merry Christmas!
Lisa L. from Texas

Ice Girls said...

Kristie, sounds like you need some Christmas cheer!
MERRY CHRISTMAS!

Cathy in MI said...

You made me cry, thanks for sharing your thoughts and memories. I can't believe it's been two years, wow, that goes so fast. I am so glad Kendrie is doing so well.

I guess we all need to be reminded sometimes what is truly important and yes, you last week sucked, but your family is healthy and together.

Wishing you a great Christmas.

Cate said...

Absolutely amazing that it has been two years!

The Running Girl said...

Two years! Yeah!!! If that doesn't put things in perspective, I don't know what does. Have a Merry Christmas.
Briana

Jane said...

Kendrie, we're celebrating with you over and over! Jane in MN

lizinsumner said...

I can't imagine how ANYONE, in the whole, wide, world, could ever- EVER - criticize (is that spelled right?? Too lazy to look it up!) you for either your perspective or your attitude.....you are, truly, an.inspiration.to.us.all. As is Kendrie, of course, which goes without saying...but, I'll say it any way. I hope your Christmas is a truly blessed and happy one. Thanks!

Pam Doughty said...

Hooray for two years off-treatment! Not that they've been two stress-free years, but the Kendrie part has been all good. Watching her grow and thrive via her Caringbridge site and now your blog (yes, YOUR blog, and it can be ALL ABOUT YOU and no one better complain!!! and yet... you do share it with your family, and so you are kind and generous. But, I digress...) has been SO encouraging to those who are currently in the battle or friends of someone who is. (and I may have just beaten your record for a run-on sentence. But again... I digress). It is wonderful that you can remember to be thankful even during challenging times; I truly believe that is the key to a joy-full life.
Merry Christmas, Escoes, and wishing you the very best New Year ever!

Susan said...

I don't think anything more than that warrants being said. Congrats to all of you! Have a very Merry Christmas and a joyous and healthy New Year!

katy said...

Gosh I remember reading about the treatments when she was still going through them. The fact that it has been two years will shine an extra light on your Christmas.

Think of everything else this way...you are getting all those other things over with at once so you should have a long time before anything else goes wrong....knock on wood.

Anonymous said...

You are so right...its all how you look at things!! Thank God for 2 years of cancer free!!

Hope your other "situations" work out ok too!

Kristina
Brookville OHIO

Karalyn said...

Yay Kendrie!!!

Melissa in CA said...

AMEN!!!